Do you find yourself having to pass on happy hour with your mates because your wallet is empty? Are you short on cash and but don’t have time for a second job? Or are you trying to finally save up for a place of your own? You’re not alone. According to a recent study, about 25 per cent of British adults have no savings. If you find yourself low on cash and are wondering what you can do to get out of the debt hole, have hope.
These 10 tips can help you gradually put some more cash in your wallet and start saving today, without the need to get a second job or even leave your flat.
Step #1 — Dating? Stop trying to impress with your wallet.
If you date regularly and are too old-fashioned or chivalrous to make your date pay her way, you could be spending hundreds of pounds per month on someone who isn’t worth your time. Try going out for coffee first to see if you click before committing to a dinner date. If you do find someone you like after a few dates, let her pay once in a while if she pulls out her purse and offers.
Step #2 — Take online surveys.
If you’re sitting in front of the telly mindlessly watching something, why not pull out your smartphone or laptop and take some short surveys? Whether in the form of cash, gift vouchers or free products to test, it pays to get something for nothing by simply sharing your opinion.
My favourite survey site is InboxPounds. They pay you £8 for every 30 minutes of watching videos and taking surveys, and they’ve paid out roughly £40,000,000
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to date worldwide, so they know what they’re doing. And, the surveys are actually interesting!
Step #3 — Sell your smartphone pics.
You’ve likely got your smartphone on you most of the time anyway, so why not start making extra money by simply taking notice of what’s going on in the world around you. An app called Foap wants your quality photos and will split the profits with you for any picture sold. So, if someone buys your pic for £10, you’ll get £5 each time it sells.
Step #4 — Have credit card balances? Shop around for lower interest rates.
If you’re only paying the minimum balance when your credit card payment is due, it’s difficult to get out of debt as the interest continues to build. Try shopping around for a card with a lower interest rate, and transfer your balance to that card. Some cards even offer promotional rates where you pay no interest for a specific period. So if you have £10,000 in credit card debt and are paying a 16% annual percentage rate, you could save £133 per month during the promotional period.
Step #5 — Switch car insurance companies.
Car insurance is one of those expenses that most people dread paying, simply because unless you get in a crash and really need it, there’s an intangible reward for having it. And wouldn’t you rather spend that money on a salon visit or new pair of shoes? What’s worse is that car insurance companies make most of their money by taking advantage of their loyal clients. If you don’t shop around when renewal time rolls around, they’ll likely raise your rates. The good thing is that it’s easy to compare prices online. A quick 10 minutes saved me £552 per year.
Step #6 – Be smart about happy hour.
After a long workday, a couple of pints at the pub with your mates can really take the stress of the day away. But when a couple of pints turns into a couple dozen, and you can’t remember where your money went in the morning, it’s time to get smarter about happy hour. Give yourself a limit and be disciplined about it. Head home before that one mate who never pays for a round shows up.
Step #7—Charged a late fee? Ask for a one-time courtesy refund.
You would be surprised as to how easy it can be to get a fee waived once you muster up the courage to simply ask. Realize that they’ll probably only do this once a year, but it’s better than losing you as a client. If you’re habitually late only because you forgot to pay, consider setting automatic payments so you don’t get charged late fees again.
Step #8—Get paid for searching online.
Next time you need to search for something online, skip Google and instead use InboxPounds. Yes, on top of getting paid for surveys, you can also get paid for searching on InboxPounds. And you’ll get a £1 bonus just for trying it.
Step #9—Get cash back for shopping.
It may seem counterintuitive to shop when you’re trying to save money, but for items you really need to buy, why not get cash back for buying them? Topcashback.co.uk offers money back for shopping both online and in-store. It’s free to join and offered worldwide. Just search for your desired retailer through their website and shop like you normally would. The retailer pays TopCashback a commission for your purchase, and then forwards part of it to you in the form of cash that you can withdraw however you like.
Step #10 – Take advantage of new checking account offers.
Lots of banks try to get new customers in the door by offering bonuses for opening new accounts, and even more for having your payslip direct deposited. Consider keeping your old account open as strictly a savings account, as long the bank doesn’t charge any fees, and watch the money grow.
Before saying no to any of the above tips, simply give them a try. Stressing about money can really take a toll on you, so put an end to debt for good and reward yourself once in a while as you make progress. After all, that new flat screen you’ve had your eye on for months will look so much better if you know you’ve earned it.
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